Dark academia is an aesthetic and book genre that is blowing up, mostly thanks to TikTok.
Dark academia’s look comes mostly from boarding schools and old universities. Think school uniforms, tweed jackets, stone columns, dark wood, dimly lit libraries with old books and drifting dust.
The books that fall into the dark academia trend could have many aspects of this multifaceted genre. They often take place in a school or university and have menacing themes like crime or secret societies. The characters may study classical philosophy, poetry, or literature. Death, existentialism, and mortality are often subjects. They aren’t usually high fantasy, but often involve arcane knowledge and more speculative elements.
Whether this appeals to your blazer-wearing, coffee-drinking self or your dark, dangerous mystery-loving self, check out the list and give one a try!
September 15th through October 15th is Hispanic Heritage Month, an annual celebration of the history and contributions of Hispanic and Latinx communities throughout the history of this country. First introduced as a week-long celebration in 1968, and expanded to a full month in 1989, this celebration of the increasing number of Americans coming from Hispanic and Latino communities was designed to pay tribute to their roles in the history, and future, of this country.
While the date in the middle of September might seem an odd choice, the start of National Hispanic Heritage Month coincides with a number of declarations of independence for a number of Central and South American countries. September 15th is the day of celebration for the independence of Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua from Spain, while Mexico celebrates its independence on September 16th and Chile does so on the 18th.
In honor of this month’s celebrations the Smithsonian will be hosting a number of virtual events to highlight notable Hispanic and Latnix figures in both history and modernity. The calendar of events can be found here, as well as links to the events on the same page. More information, including further event calendars and other resources, can be found on the website for the celebration here.
In addition, we at DBRL have collected a list of novels by Hispanic and Latinx authors for interested teens, so take this opportunity to celebrate this occasion with a great novel! The list of novels can be found here, with some of my favorites being:
- Cemetery Boys by Adien Thomas: a supernatural romp starring a Latinx trans boy brujo and a bad boy ghost companion out to solve the mystery of how a loved one’s spirit disappeared and what will need to be done to free it.
- Salty, Bitter, Sweet by Mayra Cuevas: a story of a Cuban American teen dealing with the fallout of her parents divorce and the loss of her beloved abuela by striving for excellence in a demanding French kitchen.
- Lobizona by Romina Garber: a novel, taking inspiration from Argentinian folklore, that follows Manu, a girl who lives in a small Miami apartment with her family in constant fear of being discovered by ICE. After a traumatic experience that separates Manu from her family, she discovers that her origins might not be what she thought, and that her place in the world might be more fantastical than she had suspected.
Confession time: if it were up to me, I’d probably end up only writing about fantasy books, because I love them so much. BUT I have managed to divide my love into two fantasies, two historical fictions, and two contemporaries. Be proud of my egalitarian blog writing!
“Beasts of Prey” by Ayana Gray
I had to start with the fantasy! Utilizing Pan-African mythology, there is some lush world-building in this jungle-set fantasy. Koffi is an indentured servant at the Night Zoo, home to exotic magical creatures, and dreams of earning her freedom. Ekon hopes to join the elite warrior class, as a Son of the Six in their city of Lkossa. When a fire at the Night Zoo alters both their plans, the pair reluctantly team up to pursue the deadly Shetani—a creature that has been preying on Lkossa for nearly a century. While mistrustful at first, each dangerous encounter in the Greater Jungle leads them to rely on each other more and more. As they uncover secrets about the Shetani, they realize the stakes are much higher than just their own personal quests for redemption and freedom.
Continue reading “The Selector’s Selections: September 2021”
We’ve once again come to the end of a wonderful Summer Reading program at the Daniel Boone Regional Library! We’ve gone through the list of teen book reviews that were submitted (over 200 reviews in total!), as well as the titles that moved the most during summer reading to bring you a list of the most popular titles and trends this year. Thanks again to everyone who submitted a review for the great titles you enjoyed!
This summer fantasy was king for many of our readers, exploring far flung locales and mystical places along with valiant heroes and sinister villains. Leigh Bardugo was a favorite of many of our readers, with both her Six of Crows series and The Grisha Trilogy circulating widely among our readers. Sarah J. Maas was another favorite, with her Throne of Glass series and it’s spin-offs having both favorable numbers and favorable reviews from our summer readers.
For many of our readers who didn’t go the fantasy route, a dystopian setting was their place of choice this summer. Suzanne Collins’ newly released prequel to her Hunger Games trilogy The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes was one of our highest circulated titles, with the original novels not being far behind. Authors Neal Shusterman, Kiera Cass, and Joelle Charbonneau were more favorite painters of painful potentials among our readers, so be sure to check them out if that sounds up your alley.
For more book recommendations, be sure to check out our Popular YA Titles of Summer Reading list, composed of some of our top circulating items and some of the highly reviewed summer reading titles. Your new favorite book might just be waiting for you!
Daniel Boone Regional Library is excited to let you know about some new resources available to you as part of your access to our library services!
Teen Health & Wellness
Teen Health and Wellness is a great resource for teens looking to learn more about their health and how to manage their mental health. With resources for health questions that teens might have, mental health resources to deal with a host of issues that teens might face, and a calm room that includes resources for calming and meditation (including live streams of puppies and kittens!), this is a great resource for any teen to consult when needed. I can personally vouch for the benefits of watching a livestream of puppies and kittens having a good time when things get tough, so do yourself a favor and check out this resource!
In our increasingly complex information environment, with misinformation becoming both easier and more widespread than ever. Serving that need, Digital Literacy is a host of articles and resources that seek to increase the digital literacy of teens today. From advice on what looking for employment online, to relationships on the internet, and many other online situations, this resource is a great place to check if you’re concerned about uniquely online situations. While most teens are pretty internet savvy, it’s always good to have a resource to consult for emerging situations that your teen might not have encountered before.
Financial literacy is an incredibly important knowledge base, especially for teens who might just be entering the job market. Yet, for something so important, it’s deceptively hard for the average teen to learn the financial literacy skills they would need to succeed. That’s where this resource comes in! This resource is a collection of articles, advice, and news pieces related to all things financial. From understanding the way the stock market works, and influences our lives, to tools for budgeting and personal finances, to advice for teens interested in entrepreneurship and careers in finance, this resource is a great way to gain skills related to money management for teens who don’t have them already.
2021 Teens’ Top Ten Nominees (PDF)
Voting has begun for the Teens’ Top Ten book awards! The Teens’ Top Ten award list is a teen choice list where young adults nominate and choose their favorite books of the previous year to be highlighted. This project is sponsored by the Young Adult Library Services Association.
Only fifteen young adult book clubs from school and public libraries nationwide will come together and share the responsibility of determining a list of nominees for teens to consider. (Does your book club want to get involved? Do you want a chance to make your mark on this award list for next year? Learn how.)
Based on the recommendations of these teen book clubs, the list of this year’s nominees was announced in April during National Library Week. Readers ages 12-18 are now invited to vote online through October 15 to narrow this list to the top ten selections.
The winning titles will be announced the week of October 18. Be sure to subscribe to our our email newsletter so you can stay updated!
We are happy to announce that we have the winners of this year’s DBRL Cosplay Contest! We had 20 entries for this year’s Online Cosplay Costume Contest and they were all wonderful and unique! After much deliberation we have chosen this year’s winners. Below are the three winners in our 12-18 category. Thanks to our judges and all of our participants!
For my picks this month, I thought I’d start light and transition into some darker options. Something for everyone I hope!
“Cheer Up: Love and Pompoms” by Crystal Frasier and Val Wise
First up, we’ve got a graphic novel that will be perfect for fans of “Heartstopper” and “Check, Please!” Annie is academically driven, and not interested in interacting with others much. However, when she realizes she needs extracurriculars to round out her college applications, she begrudgingly tries out for the cheerleading team. Bebe is the first transgender cheerleader in her state, and is constantly trying to please others while avoiding the spotlight. The two girls were friends before Bebe’s transition and subsequent popularity, and they slowly begin to rekindle their relationship as friendship evolves into something more. Bebe helps Annie with learning how to trust and be part of a team, and Annie helps Bebe stand up for herself to well-intentioned friends and family. Refreshingly, this graphic novel is about the experience after coming out and transitioning, not about the difficulties of the process itself. Enjoy this graphic novel if you’re in the mood for a sweet, queer romance. Continue reading “The Selector’s Selections: August 2021”
Saturday, August 14 is the final day for participants of all ages to claim rewards and enter into the final drawings for Summer Reading incentives. Those who have completed the Teen Summer Reading Challenge can claim their free book at any of our four libraries or bookmobile stops. You’ll also be entered into a drawing for other fun rewards including an Amazon Fire Tablet.
If you have questions, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (573) 443-3161. Stay informed about upcoming teen programs and contests by subscribing to our our email newsletter!
Do you need help preparing for the ACT test? We have compiled a list of resources to help you navigate this important college entrance exam.
What is the ACT?
The ACT exam is a standardized test required for admission at many colleges and universities. The exam covers four skills areas: English, mathematics, reading and science.
How much does it cost?
It costs $60 take the ACT exam; this cost increases to $80 if you are required to take the writing test as well. A fee waiver is available for low-income students; however, ACT requires that you meet with your guidance counselor to see if you qualify.
Where can I take the ACT exam?
The ACT test is offered at several of locations throughout Boone and Callaway counties, including most public high schools. Search online to find a testing location near you. Continue reading “ACT Test Prep Resources @ DBRL”